Quedlinburg is a small town of about 23,000 inhabitants northwest of Leipzig and north of the Harz Mountains in western Saxon-Anhalt. It is a treasure that is rapidly evolving into a prime tourist attraction.
A rare combination of ancient, medieval and modern historical and artistic treasures are making it a "must" for visitors, much as Rothenburg, Trier, Lübeck and other German historical gems.
This UNESCO World heritage Site, one of some 750 worldwide, has seen ever-increasing numbers of visitors – both German and foreign - enjoying a plunge into the Middle Ages especially since 1993 when the Site status was proclaimed.
Well known for it’s half-timbered (Fachwerk) houses and Romanesque architecture, Quedlinburg offers visitors a unique experience. Quedlinburg’s recorded history dates back to 922. The famous castle in the town was built up by Otto the Great in 936. Throughout its history the city has been known as a center for trade and religious activities.
There are over 1,200 Fachwerk houses with the oldest dating back to 1310. Strolling the charming, narrow streets a visitor can see the evolution of the half-timbered building styles. There are delightful squares as well as an abundance of museums, churches and castles.
Quedlinburg is also well known for its annual Christmas Market that is held on the square in front of the city hall. In 2014 the Christmas Market runs from November 28 to December 21.
Twice daily, guided walking tours are a great way for first time visitors to learn about the city and its history and attractions. They start at 11 a.m and 2 p.m. each day.
There is a special evening guided tour through the narrow streets of the city (beginning at 8 p.m.) led by a Night Watchman (Nachtwächter). The Night Watchman shares interesting stories and anecdotes about the various places along the walking tour.
Must see sights include:
The Castle Hill
Situated on a sandstone cliff, the more than thousand year old Romanesque Collegiate Church of St. Servatius towers over the city.
The Old Town
There are many historical and fascinating buildings (along with the hundreds of Fachwerk houses).
Among the sights:
The City Hall – 17th century Renaissance architecture at its best.
The Church of St. Basil – perhaps the oldest church in the city with a Romanesque Tower lending credence to that claim Schreckens-Turm (The Tower of Horror) The tower of horror is one of the most elaborately constructed defense towers of the Old Town wall. Its dungeon served in the Middle Ages as the town prison.
The New Town
Around 1200 A.D., the Quedlinburg New Town began to develop along the walls of the Old Town behind the Mühlgraben canal. Buildings to visit there include the St. Nikolai Church, City Yowers “Behind the Wall” and the New Town Churchyard 7. New Town also has some of the oldest and most beautiful Fachwerke houses in Quedlinburg.
Directly opposite Castle Hill. In 986, the first abbess of the Quedlinburg Imperial Ladies’ Chapter, and her daughter-in-law erected the Convent of St. Mary (Marienkloster). Towards the end of 16th century it had fallen into a state of desolation. Today portions of the convent have been restored for visitation by the public. A museum offers insights into the ups and downs in the history of the "Münzenberg" and documents the fate of the Convent and the Church of St. Mary. The one-time convent kitchen with its quaint, medieval chimney has been converted into an attractive vacation house. A coffee house offers a magnificent view across to the town and the castle-hill, inviting the visitor, after a climb up the 107 steps to the top of the hill, to a moment of repose and refreshment.
The Outer Ring
Towards the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries, a ring of streets with turn of the century and art nouveau Villas was constructed. Quedlinburg, on the crest of a new wave of prosperity had expanded beyond its medieval boundaries. Architecturally the most important of these outer ring streets are the Adelheidstraße, the Harzweg and the Wallstraße.
In addition to the marvelous architecture and wonder sight, Quedlinburg also has a number of fascinating museums. There is many cultural events throughout the year including art exhibitions and musical programs.
Tel: +49 (3946) 905620
The landmark Quedlinburg Castle with "der Brocken" in the background
Outside view of St. Cyriakus, the Romanesque Clositer and Church in the Gernrode district
Inside courtyard of St Cyriakus
Half timbered houses below the castle
Typical outdoor dining in Quedlinburg
A procession during the "Kaiserfrühling" - an annual Medieval Festival